What will be the result of Sasse’s speech?

Nebraska Freshman Senator Ben Sasse finally took to the Senate floor to give his maiden speech in the Senate.

In it, he blasted his fellow Senators for blathering too much.

See the Morning Joe summary of it here:

Sasse mainly said what everyone knows — that Congress does a great deal of talking with out saying much. That they say what they don’t mean. That they don’t really debate much of anything.

And while he is correct, he should be skeptical of any media adulation that results. All that needs to be noted is the LJS editorial that praised Sasse for “stepping up” the dialogue when discussing who the House would choose for Speaker.

Then, less than a week later, when Sasse used some Senate rules to try to get the Admin to change on an issue — and the LJS didn’t like that he was going after President Obama — they criticized his tactics and called him “same old…”

This will happen to Sasse again as soon as he crosses someone on THEIR issue. Whether that’s press or Senator.


“We should have taken applicants.”

Speaking of “same old”, shame on Leavenworth St. for not bringing this up on Monday…

The Douglas County Board decided that they NEEDED to slam through a new Douglas County Clerk in the wake of Tom Cavanaugh’s death.

The reason?

They had a letter Cavanaugh wrote recommending his administrative assistant Dan Esch for the gig.

And we read today that it was an emotional meeting, where the commissioners voted 7-0 to appoint Esch because of Cavanaugh’s wishes.

And we should feel empathy for their loss.

…as Commissioner Mary Ann Borgeson said,

“We should have taken applicants. We should have seen who was out there.”

Yes, they should have.
Or they should have at least used some sort of process.

Look, if Cavanaugh had just quit a year ago, would his recommendation have slammed in Dan Esch?
Would they have just taken whatever his suggestion was at face value?
Would that have been the way they operated?

Their emotion about Cavanaugh should have nothing to do with how the office is filled.

And maybe Esch IS the greatest guy to take the office.
But shouldn’t there be a process to determine that?
To find out if he is truly qualified for the job?
To find out if MAYBE there is someone who would be better, Tom Cavanaugh’s suggestion notwithstanding?

Was there a rush to have this position filled that we are not aware of?
Would the office not operate sufficiently for another month or whatever?

Oh, and guess what?
There ARE political implications in all of this.
And Tom Cavanaugh would have known that as well.

This isn’t to cast aspersions on Cavanaugh or Esch.
But Mary Ann Borgeson noted that there was a better way to go about this, and instead, for no apparent reason, it got slammed through.

The OWH has editorialized that MECA needs to be transparent.
That Charlie Janssen needs to be more transparent as Auditor.
That Tom Cavanaugh “spearheaded efforts to make government activities more transparent.”

Yet no one seems to batting an eye about the way the County Board decided on this issue.

Maybe someone can explain it to us, as we close the barn door and the horse runs away.


Dick Holland Memorial Parking Lot

Interesting reading about the razing of Jobber’s Canyon, and the laments on what “could have been” had Con Agra not built there.

But not so much lamenting on the plans to raze historical buildings… when Dick Holland’s name is attached to the new plans.

Funny how that works.


To Nest or not to Nest

Thanks again for helping Leavenworth St. to grow by Liking us on The Facebook and liking on the Twitter as well! And thanks to those who have helped themselves by subscribing (up top, right) to get email notifications on new posts here!

To try something different, I have enabled “nested” comments, that can go 3 deep.

Add your thoughts in the Comments section on whether or not to use “nested” comments, to better follow discussions. The only real downside is when you get nested in nested in nested, and the space starts to disappear.

In any case, in the Comments, please add “YES-nested” or “No-nested”, to see how it’s going.

Thanks again!


  1. Sparkles says:

    Hat’s off to Ben.
    He talked the talk.
    I’ll be the first to stand and applaud if he’ll now follow up with even a modicum of walking the walk.

    SS – you’ve got an interesting take on LJS’s displeasure with Sasse. You frame it;
    “Sasse used some Senate rules to try to get the Admin to change on an issue”

    From Sasse’s own web page:
    October 19, 2015
    “I will act to block consideration and confirmation of every HHS nominee..”

    That doesn’t seem like a reasoned request for “change on an issue”.
    That’s seems more like an opening volley of; ‘I’m taking hostages!’


    • TexasAnnie says:

      Haven’t interacted with Sasse and don’t know his inclinations. But his googled bio is pretty impressive. An historian with widespread experience and a *possible* fix of the ACA, (—without the drama of more failed repeal attempts). He sounds moderate. And very popular there; he won the general election a year ago with 64% of the vote.

  2. Anonymous says:

    How can anyone stand in the face of the usual bully tactics of those on the Omaha Performing Arts Society? Odd, too, that Mr. Bell former CEO of HDR sits on their board. Gosh. Do you think there is any collusion going on there? Not as long as they have Doris Day out doing their bidding. Odd, I thought she was a conservative and campaigned as one, yet now that she’s government she’s in private property owner’s living room doing real estate brokering for HDR and OPAS. Interesting how that works when you carry water for those who brung ya to the dance. Shameful disgrace of thugs and bullies who only want what they want, because they can. Put your plan on where the two restaurants failed or where the Fortune 500 company left a campus. To see a city mayor trying to do the dirt work of bullies while screwing taxpayers is precisely what is wrong.

  3. NE Voter says:

    Sasse waits 20% of his term for . . . That???? Sasse is a complete lightweight; makes Johanns and Fischer look like Ali and Frazier. Astonishingly weak — Not a SINGLE proposal of substance. Sorry, Nebraska, you’ve been had. Wake up, people!

  4. Oyster says:

    Sasse says Senators talk too much. US Senators don’t really have a job other than to impeach a president. And they are too wimpy for that. Each Senator’s main duty is to look like the Monopoly guy with a top hat. Be dignified. Harrumph.

    The Senate is supposed to be deliberative. It is the upper house. It discusses matters. But Sasse wants real work done and problems solved. Good luck with that. Maybe somebody should tell him it is a REPUBLICAN run Senate. But mostly it is a body of neutered Senators who don’t stand up to a neutered Obama. Our government is run by dumb cattle, steers to be precise.

    Locally too. The appointment of Esch to county political office, as a dying man’s last request, is so egregiously stupid, that the entire County Board should be tied in a sack and thrown into the river. Let Mary Ann do it. She might know how to tie a knot.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I see a few powerful families still control things in Omaha government. If Mary Anne knew it was wrong why didn’t she have the guts to stand against it and move for proper protocols to take place? She might have been one vote but even if she got a couple to go along then at least they could have made the case rather than anointing this guy. Using Cavanaugh’s death as a reason to throw out usual order just smacks of cronyism.

    • TexasAnnie says:

      Yep! And it makes you wonder about Mary Ann’s morality, too. (I don’t know her.) We’ve all been swept away by emotion, and we’ve all had to practice restraint. When someone tells you that they ‘know better’ but do the deed anyway, well… The irony is: County Clerk is a position requiring strict adherence to procedure!

      Aside: Is the Irish-singing County Attorney still in place there?

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree that the County Board should have applied a more rigorous process in filling the vacancy in the County Clerk’s office. This is mitigated to an extent by the fact that the newly-appointed Clerk will stand for election in just a year.

      These appointments are inherently political. Does anyone remember when the Board appointed Republican Stu Dornan over Don Kleine after County Attorney Jansen resigned? Everyone in Nebraska knew that Kleine was the best man in the state for the position, including the County Commissioners who appointed Dornan over him. I suspect that Stu kew it, too.

      At any rate, the voters corrected that in the next election.

  6. Nesty Comments says:

    The trolls will just love nested comments.

    They can post their bait and lean back in joyful anticipation of getting some personal attention.

  7. Snarkskin suit says:

    11:15. People who troll for idiots; which BTW makes the idiots more like the dimwitted bridge trolls of lore than the snarks who troll for these dupes; such snarky wits will still troll for dumb shits with or without nested comments.

    Note that Sweeper limits the nest to three eggs per. Any additional chicks get pureed for Carson’s fetal experiments in bird encephalitis.

  8. Lil Mac says:

    Today former DNC chairman, Sen Tim Kaine, rebukes Obama as directionless in Syria and a tyrant for refusing to work through Congress. Kaine’s pain is Obama; an ideologue elected on the hope that he’d not be a directionless, feckless fellow, who is in fact a pure product of political correctness.

    PC, in all its forms, is a cancer and Obama the inevitable tumor. This is apparent even to a former DNC chairman.

    For eight years, whenever anyone has tried to call Obama what Kaine calls Obama, Democrats have dropped the PC “bigot” race bomb on Obama’s critics. Obama himself played the wimpy race card from day one. Political correctness has since gagged and increasingly infuriates Americans.

    Thanks to Trump, Americans understand that polite PC untruth never trumps truth, no matter how rudely stated; and thanks to Carson, they see that GOP voters don’t care about skin color because Carson is twice as black as half-white Obama. Indeed, it has becoming publicly obvious that Race is a PC tool use to scare people into voting out of fear. And since the same PC terrifies GOP politicians, average voters are turning away from GOP politicians to Trump and Carson.

    The RNC is being horse whipped by average Americans. What they have in mind for the DNC is worse.

    • Sparkles says:

      February 12, 2015
      Obama, flanked by Vice President Joe Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel gathered in front of the national press, stepped up the microphone and called for Congress to do their duty to grant the President AUMF.
      Formally asked that Congress fulfill it’s obligation to formally authorize the war on Isis.
      The President submitted to Congress a draft authorization, outlining the parameters of his bill. A bill reflecting “our core objective to destroy ISIL,”. A bill granting the President specific authorization to engage in “systemic and sustained campaign of airstrikes,” support and training for forces on the ground and humanitarian assistance.

      President Obama did exactly what was required of him under the constitution.
      It’s our do-nothing Congress that, yet again, failed.
      House Republican leaders immediately dismissed the White House draft authorization as too limited, insisting that the President should have fewer limitations.
      An exact quote from the GOP leader:
      “If we are going to defeat this enemy, we need a comprehensive military strategy and a robust authorization, not one that limits our options,” House Speaker John Boehner said.

      It was, and it remains, a GOP lead coalition who, in response to the Presidents request, staked out the position – ‘if we can’t turn the mideast into rubble, waste hundreds of billions of dollars and risk the sacrifice of countless young American soldiers – we refuse to act!’

      AND – to Tim Kaine.
      October 31st, 2015 – a quote from Tim Kaine, interviewed by NPR:
      KAINE: … Congress doesn’t want to touch it. Congress wants to criticize the president but neither authorize nor stop what the president is doing. And it’s just a huge abdication of responsibility, and it sets a horrible precedent.

      Also, assuming anyone is interested the truth, a June 8th story from WaPo re the President’s request for AUMF lends more insight into the GOP intransigence. Google – Breaking: Congressional vote on war against ISIS might not be dead after all

      • bynd says:

        So, it’s alright for Obama to start his own war and leave it for the next guy? A bi partisan group of politicians voted for Bush’s war. How did that turn out for you? Isn’t it this Pres who said he had a pen and phone and has fearlessly changed federal law by a stroke of that pen? Yet, you complain when the congress doesn’t go along with his wishes as you lament what a weak and feckless pres. he is now?

        Why don’t you just do the standard Dem cop out and say it is Bush’s fault? And by the way, why not leave the fighting to the Russians and Iranians because we have seen over and over again how all of that has worked out before and we sure as hell don’t want to be in the middle of a war with a waffling, indecisive president. Who said to go ahead and train the moderate terrorists to the tune of $500 million and then when it failed said he didn’t believe it would work?

        Isn’t it Obama who has said we are tired of war? So doesn’t he pay attention to himself? And what has any of this to do with Sass’s speech?

      • Sparkles says:


        Lil Mac claimed:
        “Sen Tim Kaine, rebukes Obama as directionless in Syria and a tyrant for refusing to work through Congress”

        I simply brought to light that Lil Mac’s claim is bullshit.
        President Obama – IN FACT – did everything within his power to work with Congress.

        AND – Tim Kaine blames CONGRESS for it’s “abdication of responsibility”, NOT President Obama.

      • bynd says:

        Sorry, but from other than a partisan’s view, Obama hasn’t tried to work with anyone who isn’t willing to give him everything he wants. He promised no business as usual and transparency. It should be obvious by now, the system doesn’t change, just the players. And he knew that going in.

      • Sparkles says:

        You claim:
        “Obama hasn’t tried to work with anyone who isn’t willing to give him everything he wants. ”

        That’s simply a ludicrous statement, totally untethered to reality.
        And therein lies the problem. Therein -always- lies the problem.
        Time and time and time again, even when confronted with incontrovertible evidence disproving your claims, entire legions among the right are either incapable of understanding the fallacy of their argument or they’re so deeply invested in their their alternate reality, it’s impossible for them consider that their entire construct may be wholly illusory.

        Total, incapacitating epistemic closure.
        And it’s f*^&ing up our country.

      • Oracle says:

        Obama hasn’t tried to work with anyone who isn’t willing to give him everything he wants..

        bynd, did you miss the the first years of Obama’s presidency? He tried to compromise, much to the chagrin of Democrats, but got nowhere. Sparkle’s got you pegged.

  9. Frequent Voter says:

    Sasse is a Rock Star!

    Now for something completely different: Why would Perlman give Eichort a contract extension at this juncture? Wouldn’t be prudent.

  10. Intersted Observer says:

    There is a scene in the John Wayne movie “McLintock” where the Wayne character addresses a government hearing concerning the Comanche Tribe. Wayne speaks for the Comanche chiefs and says:

    “We are an old people and a proud people. When the White Man first came among us, we were as many as the grasses of the prairie. Now we are few, but we are still proud. For if a man lose his pride in manhood, he is nothing. You tell us now that if we will let you send us away to this place called Fort Sill, you will feed us and care for us. Let us tell you this: It is a Comanche law that no chief ever eats unless first he sees that the pots are full of meat in the lodges of the widows and orphans. It is the Comanche way of life. This that the White Man calls charity is a fine thing for widows and orphans, but no warrior can accept it, for if he does, he is no longer a man and when he is no longer a man, he is nothing and better off dead. You say to the Comanche, “You are widows and orphans. You are not men.” And we the Comanches say we would rather be dead. It will not be a remembered fight when you kill us, because we are few now and have few weapons, but we will fight, and we will die Comanche.

    I have long opposed the various forms of governmental welfare or “charity”, including the USDA federal drought program payments, the USDA farmer crop subsidy payments, the USFS and BLM grazing subsidies, all the various corporate “incentives”, economic development subsidies, WIC, General Assistance, energy assistance programs, subsidized housing, food stamps, etc. Just how much lower would our total tax spending be if ALL of the undeserving federal “charity” were either eliminated or at the VERY least, given ONLY to those who actually and honestly deserve some temporary help? Look at the fraud in the Medicare program, specifically by that pharmacist in Lincoln recently.


    Just recently, I have started to note that as bad as it is that the able bodied person posing as a “widow and orphan” begs for welfare, it is that much worse that the government, in all it’s various levels and departments, develops all of these programs, constantly and chronically tempting someone who, in the absence of this bombardment of temptation, would never have even considered accepting, much less applying for, all this sort of welfare.

    Thus, the problem lies not only in the recipient in each and every one of these programs, but IN THE PROGRAMS, THEMSELVES! Sasse can talk about the Senate, the House, the President and the way they all talk and treat each other, but that is almost a deliberate distraction away from the real problem, in my opinion. Kind of like “Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!”.

  11. Oracle says:

    I didn’t have the time to do the research, but the Washington Post did it for me. In defending Marco Rubio’s missed votes in the Senate, GH pointed out that Obama’s missed votes percentage was much greater. I rebutted that you have to compare over the same time frame of the different elections. Doing that, I was sure that Rubio would eventually exceed or at least match the missed votes percentage of Obama. While I can’t predict the future with certainty, the WP says: Rubio still has a worse attendance record by this point of the year prior to an election than did Obama or Hillary Clinton at this point in 2007

    By the way, Bernie Sanders is the only Senator running for the presidency that remembers his primary and current job is to represent the state of Vermont. He’s only missed 4% of Senate votes compared to Rubio’s 42%, Lindsay Graham’s 27% and Ted Cruz’s 24%

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